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Headworks BIO Inc. Awarded Contract to Commission Wastewater Treatment System on the World’s Largest Cruise Ship

September 23, 2009 download pdf


Headworks BIO Inc. is pleased to announce the signing of a contract with STX Europe in Turku, Finland, for the finalization and commissioning of the Oasis of the Seas Cruise Ship wastewater treatment system. Using innovative moving bed bioreactor (“MBBR”) and Return Activated Sludge technologies, the system promises to be the first example of the latest evolution in onboard wastewater treatment.

Oasis of the Seas is the world’s largest cruise ship being built by STX Europe for Royal Caribbean International. It will have capacity for 5,400 guests onboard in 2,700 staterooms with a crew contingent of 2,160 members. All black, grey, galley, food waste, and laundry wastewater generated onboard will be treated to a higher quality than the Alaska State Discharge Standards, currently the most stringent in the world. The maiden voyage of this technologically groundbreaking ship is scheduled for December of 2009 and all systems will be functional and ready for passengers prior to launch.

“When the original wastewater treatment system supplier for the Oasis of the Seas was no longer able to complete the system in August of this year, we were more than relieved to have the Headworks BIO team step in so quickly,” stated Sami Hautala, Vice President of STX Europe. “The transition to their group was made virtually seamless by the professionalism of their managers and the expertise of their engineers and technicians. Additionally, their team suggested improvements on the original design which removed any doubt as to its operating efficiently under the most challenging of conditions. We’ve been extremely impressed by their determination to not only accomplish certification of the system on time for the ship’s maiden voyage, but to ensure that the system is the best possible design aboard any cruise liner in the world. On many levels, Oasis of the Seas is a world-class engineering feat, including the unique biological system for treating its wastewater.”

Headworks BIO’s recent acquisition of various assets of Hydroxyl Systems, Inc. and its recruitment of former members of the Hydroxyl engineering team has increased the company’s capacity and expertise, strengthening it as a leading solutions provider in the fast growing MBBR and IFAS wastewater treatment systems market. MBBR technology is a biological wastewater treatment process which is more efficient than conventional or membrane wastewater treatment systems. It is not only more cost-efficient, but requires less energy and space, both paramount considerations in the extremely limited confines of ships. Hydroxyl was one of the first of two companies to develop MBBR technology for use in municipalities and industrial applications and became the world leader in marine wastewater treatment.

Hydroxyl’s ActiveCell®  biofilm carriers have many years of proven success in the field. Using the ActiveCell and other biofilm carriers, Headworks BIO provides innovative MBBR and IFAS solutions for compact modular systems and designs which can significantly increase the flow capacity and efficiency of new and existing plants within their original footprint.

“Participating in the completion of the Oasis of the Seas is an exciting venture for Headworks BIO,” stated its President, Michele LaNoue. “The shipping industry recognizes this cruise ship as a remarkable engineering, architectural, and design achievement. Certainly the treatment of the wastewater generated by day-to-day operations involving over 8,000 people on board will live up to the high bar set by the many innovations designed throughout the ship. Headworks BIO’s system sets new standards in the shipping industry water treatment business for quality of effluent, ease of use, low maintenance, low energy and chemical requirements, and peace of mind for passengers and crew, while doing its job to protect the seas from further pollution.”

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